Zulkifli proposes racial hatred act to handle 3R cases

25 Jul 2023 06:16pm
Dr Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri - FILE PIX
Dr Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri - FILE PIX

SHAH ALAM - Former Minister in the Prime Minister's Department (Religious Affairs), Datuk Dr Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri suggested that the government enact the Racial Hatred and Religious Extremism Act to deal with cases of provocation of religion, race and royal institutions.

Zulkifli, who is also the former Federal Territory Mufti,said that the act of insulting the King or the Sultan is not the same as the act of incitement which is stipulated under the existing act.

"Royal institutions as well as religion are much higher in position and should not be equated with any existing item in the act.

As far as we remember, the National Unity Consultation Council (MPKN) before it was changed to the People's Harmony Consultation Council once proposed the drafting of this act but we are not sure of its progress," he said in his blog on Tuesday

Previously, the media reported that the government is studying to create a new act based on civil aspects that may be named the National Racial Act similar to the Racial Harmony Act in Singapore and the proposal was presented to the ministers at the Cabinet meeting.

Consequently, Zulkifli also suggested that full authority be given to the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (SKMM) to delete displays of activities that insult royal institutions, invoke religious sensitivities, viral false information, and racism on social media without being tied to any party.

According to him, it is also proposed that the government create a clear provision in the Federal Constitution for cases of insulting Islam.

"Even though Islam is the federal religion, until today there is no clear and firm provision regarding insulting Islam that is stated in the Federal Constitution.

"Apart from that, the sharia law also has some weaknesses that result in difficulty to prosecute and make case convictions because the scope of the insulting religion offense is too general and vague," he said.

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In addition, he commented, the Advisory Board of the Council of Rulers also needs to be established to act as a link between the King and government institutions.

"In the context of Malaysia, the Advisory Council for the Council of Rulers can be composed of religious leaders who have experience in the governance of Islamic religious affairs and recognized for their knowledge," he said

He added that the government is advised to conduct private inter-religious dialogue focusing on the involvement of religious leaders.

"The discussion will focus on more divergent matters on beliefs and global issues such as climate change, religious extremism, peace, and various initiatives as a global society (global citizen).

"The results of the discussion will then be translated into various forms of programs involving the public, students of higher learning institutions, professionals, and even world leaders," he explained.

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